I guess my question would be why is it that atheists regularly bring up the question asking if it is okay for a Christian to lie to Nazis? Let us first define our terms here. There is a huge difference between “Lying” and “Deception”. Deception in the case of deceiving the Nazis knocking on the door asking if you are hiding Jews in your cellar, would be morally acceptable of course! My point being that “lying” is a sin against God, “deception” is morally ok, as it is not a sin.
Let me explain deception. Nobody would ever suggest a Baseball Pitcher when he was hiding the ball in his mitt during the windup would be “lying”. He is hiding the stitching on the ball away from the batter so that the batter won’t know what is being tossed his way.
So “Lying” defined would be more like breaking the trust with someone when the “truth” is your responsibility.
Proverbs 3: 27 27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.
“Deception” does not breach trust as some relinquish their right to the truth by infringing on the rights and trust of others. In the case of “deceiving” the Nazis in the above scenario, we take into perspective the nature and character of the situation. You know Nazis banging on the door are not there to invite you out for tea. You know the outcome, if you were not to deceive them! Circumstances, Character and Motives are very important factors to come to the Moral Decision!
Scripture indicates that God himself was involved in deceptions.
Josh 8: 2 2 You shall do to Ai and its king as you did to Jericho and its king, except that you may carry off their plunder and livestock for yourselves. Set an ambush behind the city.”
God is true and cannot lie but he set out to deceive the opposition of Israel in combat.
God is true: Romans 3: 4,4 Not at all! Let God be true, and every human being a liar. As it is written:
“So that you may be proved right when you speak
and prevail when you judge.”
God does not lie: Titus 1: 2 2 in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time,3 and which now at his appointed season he has brought to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior
Would Atheists lie to the Nazis? It is clear that it would NOT be a “lie” to protect the helpless. It is a very unfair and poorly thought out question.